A night of informality, good fellowship, some regrets but great memories
Players, supporters, sponsors and local dignatories came together to farewell an amazing season.
Our Newtown Jets finished 2011 at the same venue in the same knock-out game as 2010 but everyone from our talented coach, Greg Matterson, to Terry Rowney, former Club Director, now NSW Rugby League Vice-President, and ever part of the life and soul of our club, acknowledged that 2011 was a different year.
For players and supporters, there were some remarkable moments.
- Winning against the Bulldogs on their home turf at Crest stadium and then again, at our own Henson Park
- Winning all four Foundation cups/shields - the Tom Raudonikis Cup, the Frank Hyde Shield, the Trevor Ryan-Neil Pringle Shield and the MUA Solidarity Cup
- Drawing great crowds to our home games and often outnumbering opposition supporters at away games!
- Scoring really creative team tries with clever plays and great backing up
The Presentation Night sadly marks the end of our 2011 NSW Cup experiences -saturdays on the hill, in the King George V stand, up in the Jets lounge, on the hard Henson park benches or at away games with our flags, banners and loud voices.
For players, the end-of-season marks a time of decision. Do they play on? Can they get a contract for 2012? Director, Terry Rowney, expressed the club's hope of keeping this great squad of players together and everyone on the night expressed the same hope to each other.
At least one player has definite plans for 2012. Brad Barrett is off to south-western France - another escapee to the Elite 1 competition. He will join the Montpellier Red Devils so we will have some French adventures to follow over the off-season: Lopini Paea and Jason Baitieri at the Catalans Dragons, Luke Towers at the Limoux Grizzliese, Steve Naughton at the Pia Donkeys and now, Brad at the Red Devils. Good luck, Brad!
2011 Representative and NRL Selection Honours
- The representative honours achieved by our players reflect the quality of the Newtown lineup in 2011.
- Four players registered with the Newtown RLFC won NRL selection with the Sydney Roosters in 2011: Willie Mataka, Mark Kheirallah, Francis Vaiotu, Rhys Pritchard.
- Aidan Guerra was selected for the 2011 Australian Kangaroos & Prime Minister's XIII train-on squad
- Boyd Cordner was selected in the Junior Kangaroos train-on squad
- Tom Symonds made City Origin.
- Our strong links with Cook Islands rugby league were emphasised by five  players being selected for the Cook Islands national representative team: Tinirau Arona, Sam Brunton, Byron Ford, Johnathon Ford, Brad Takairangi
- Khalid Deeb, Ahmad Ellaz were named in the Lebanon national representative train-on squad for the 2013 RLWC qualifiers.
- Mose Masoe was selected for the Samoan national representative train-on squad
- The Newtown RLFC Assistant Coach 2011, Sean Rutgerson was named as Team Trainer for the 2011 NSW Cup representative team.
2011 Club Awards
The club awards gave everyone the chance to recognise the contribution of so many enthusiastic club supporters as well as players who had carried us on such a wonderful ride through 2011.
- Newtown RLFC Website Design and Management Award: Susan Harkus
- Photographers' Awards: Jason McCawley, Mike Biboudis, Gary Sutherland
- Newtown Jets Supporters' Awards: NRL debutants with the Sydney Roosters (who also played with the Newtown RLFC in 2011): Rhys Pritchard, Francis Vaiotu, Justin Carney, Willie Mataka, Mark Kheirallah, Lama Tasi, Boyd Cordner
- Club Persons of the Year (non-players) Rob Podnar & John Trad
- Ball Boys' Award Jake Ashley, Zac Doyle & Tom Sargood
- Statisticians' Award - Matthew Borg & Patrick Curteis
- Medical Services Award Dr Ameer Ibrahim
- Physiotherapy Award - Adam Bentley
- Leading Points Scorer Blake Lazarus (9 Tries, 37 Goals = 110 points)
- Leading Try Scorers Byron Ford & Rhys Pritchard (11 Tries each)
- Most Improved Player Francis Vaiotu
- Coach's Award Kurt Kara
- Special Presentations: Greg Matterson - 50th NSW Cup win as Head Coach (from 2008 to 2011) (This was a 20-10 win against North Sydney on the 28th May 2011 @ Henson Park)
- Framed Jerseys presented to major sponsors: SGE Credit Union (accepted by Marianne Ledic) & Petersham RSL (accepted by Club Director, John Lee)
Club awards - Players
- Most Consistent Player Ahmad Ellaz
- Newtown RLFC 2011 Players' Player Award Khalid Deeb
- Newtown RLFC NSW Cup 2011 Best and Fairest Award Khalid Deeb
- The Fred Daly Memorial Shield (awarded to the player judged to have contributed most to the club) Brad Barrett
On the Friday following our Presentation Night, Khalid Deeb and Ahmad Ellaz were named in the NSW Cup of the year, Ahmad as one of the second rowers, and Khalid as one of the props and captain of the team.
Sam Latu was given an honourable mention for winger, Johnathon Ford and honourable mention as five-eighth, and Brad Takairangi and honourable mention for the second row.
The NSWRL website reported the selections of Khalid and Ahmad in the following way.
"Every side needs a Khalid Deeb, uncompromising, no nonsense and tough as teak. Deeb has also been named as the captain of the 2011 NSW Cup TOTY."
"Ellaz is a player who was at the Sharks and played NYC there but when he was not re-signed he simply rocked up to Henson Park for a trial and he has never looked back. Ellaz has stood out in a forward pack that includes Takairangi, Mataka and Barrett